Non-binary sexual and gender identities in the community
the khuntha as an isolated being in the mosque
Keywords:Intersexuality, Khuntha, Gender variance
The Mamluk jurist 'Abd al-Rahim al-Isnawi's legal manual on the cases involving a khuntha (an intersex person) was comprehensive on matters of religious practice. It allows us to understand the underlying doctrinal strategies that the jurists used in regulating the khuntha's access to public life. This article attempts to examine specific strategies that al-Isnawi used in his legal manual's chapter on salah (ritual prayer). Through an exploration of the doctrines in the chapter affecting a khuntha's comportment and location, I assess the possible consequences of such doctrines on the life of a khuntha. The major consequence is the khuntha's social isolation in the name of accommodating them in a community's mosque by providing a specific row for them. The accommodation requires outing a khuntha as such within the community space, leading to further isolation, even when the khuntha is not a singular subject within the community.
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